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Obama: 'I'm A Christian By Choice'

6a00d8341c730253ef0134864f8847970c-800wi President Obama's opponents enjoy taking aim at his religion, and have worked overtime to paint him as Muslim, which to many conservatives is worse than practicing no faith at all.

Though the Commander-in-Chief has tried and tried to convince people he's Christian, his efforts often fall flat: almost 20% of voters still think he practices Islam. Perhaps the President's unscripted reply in Albuquerque, New Mexico, will quiet some of his religious critics.

"Why are you a Christian?" asked a woman today, leading Obama, who's traveling around four Republican-leaning states, to answer, “I’m a Christian by choice."

He went on to explain, "I came to my Christian faith later in life and it was because the precepts of Jesus Christ spoke to me in terms of the kind of life that I would want to lead. Being my brothers and sisters’ keeper, treating others as they would treat me, and I think also understanding that Jesus Christ dying for my sins spoke to the humility we all have to have as human beings."

Of course, skeptics and cynics will likely suggest the White House planted this woman there to ask that very question. Because, you know, the administration doesn't have anything else to worry about...

Read Obama's entire reply, AFTER THE JUMP.

I’m a Christian by choice. My family, frankly, they weren’t folks who went to church every week. My mother was one of the most spiritual people I knew but she didn’t raise me in the church, so I came to my Christian faith later in life and it was because the precepts of Jesus Christ spoke to me in terms of the kind of life that I would want to lead.

Being my brothers and sisters’ keeper, treating others as they would treat me, and I think also understanding that Jesus Christ dying for my sins spoke to the humility we all have to have as human beings, that we’re sinful and we’re flawed and we make mistakes and we achieve salvation through the grace of God.

But what we can do, as flawed as we are, is still see God in other people, and do our best to help them find their own grace. That’s what I strive to do, that’s what I pray to do every day.

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Comments

  1. I look forward to the day when nobody gives a rat's behind what religion the president is.

    Posted by: Brad | Sep 28, 2010 6:02:53 PM


  2. I believe he's an atheist and became a christian 'by choice' when he decided to run for public office. Such a shame that belief in 'god' is so essential in order to succeed in US politics. Christianity (as well as Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, Scientology etc etc) are clearly absurd and irrational beliefs. Why can't that be stated openly in the US?

    Posted by: Steve Collins | Sep 28, 2010 6:03:16 PM


  3. I'm so sick of people pulling out the 'christian' or 'religious' card whenever it's convenient. Only to turn around and be the biggest hypocrite to any theological dogma.

    Worry about someone elses morality when you got yours in check. Translation: About 99 percent of humans need to keep their mouth shut.

    Posted by: jakeinlove | Sep 28, 2010 6:24:53 PM


  4. "...is worse than practicing no faith at all. "

    No, reality and polls all show the opposite. Atheists r considered the worse most evil beings by all faiths/fairytales

    Ironically a recent poll showed that atheists and agnostics know more about religion than the believers of each fairytale

    Atheists and agnostics ranked most knowledgeable on religions

    Jews came in next in understanding their own faith and having knowledge of other faiths

    Catholics ranked the lowest as far as knowledge of their own faith and other faiths

    Posted by: mstrozfckslv@yahoo.com | Sep 28, 2010 6:31:57 PM


  5. Yes, religion or lack of it is a choice, whether you play golf or not is a choice, what color top you wear with those nifty red sneakers is a choice. Sexual orientation, not a choice, but that's what we get hammered for.

    Posted by: Tone | Sep 28, 2010 6:54:51 PM


  6. To JAKEINLOVE - Are you wanting us to believe you're in the 1% that get to express their opinion?

    Posted by: dvdinorl | Sep 28, 2010 7:09:43 PM


  7. In a perfect world, he should have told the woman asking that question to "go to hell."

    Posted by: Philo | Sep 28, 2010 7:17:12 PM


  8. What is wrong with discussing religion? There is nothing wrong with discussing one's faith, or lack thereof. Since one's relationship with God is the most important thing to a huge percentage of people, why can't people discuss it openly when they want? Religious discussion is part of free speech.

    Posted by: Javier | Sep 28, 2010 7:23:51 PM


  9. What Steve Collins said. The required pretense of religious faith to run for public office is why first rate honest intelligent people won't even get in the race.

    Posted by: Veritas, Right? | Sep 28, 2010 7:41:01 PM


  10. I'm loathing this Janus-faced fuck more and more and more

    Posted by: Christopher | Sep 28, 2010 7:43:06 PM


  11. "I think also understanding that Jesus Christ dying for my sins spoke to the humility we all have to have as human beings..."

    There is nothing humble about running for public office and especially not for president of the US. The whole campaign process is one of hubris and self-aggrandizement. It only gets worse when they take office and exercise power.

    Posted by: DireFates | Sep 28, 2010 8:07:19 PM


  12. Atheists, on average, are more educated than believers. There are exceptions, of course, but that's what they are: exceptions. They're the least likely, compared to any of the other mainstream religions in the united states, to divorce.

    "Out of convicted rapists, 57% admitted to reading
    pornography. 95% admitted to reading the Bible."

    The reichwing whackos are going to have a field day with this.

    Posted by: TANK | Sep 28, 2010 8:20:10 PM


  13. Why does it matter?

    Posted by: andypharmer | Sep 28, 2010 8:48:41 PM


  14. Yay for following one delusion over another! WTF, people?

    Posted by: Bob | Sep 28, 2010 9:00:37 PM


  15. I think he spoke with a lot of insight and understanding that suggests he came to Christianity authentically and thoughtfully. You can see that in how he uses the word "grace."

    Posted by: David Groff | Sep 28, 2010 9:11:54 PM


  16. New Mexico is not a Republican leaning state. Democrats out-number Republicans 2 to 1 there. The problem is that so many of them vote for the Green Party, it's qualified for major party status there and it splits the Democratic vote, so we end up with Republicans in office.

    Posted by: Will | Sep 28, 2010 9:49:39 PM


  17. >> You can see that in how he uses the word "grace."

    DG, it's how he uses the word grace that bothers me.

    "what we can do, as flawed as we are, is still see God in other people, and do our best to help them find their own grace. That’s what I strive to do, that’s what I pray to do every day."

    So often I've seen, the concept "help" turns into "help them whether they want it or not" and "help them whether they need it or not". Christian "help" becomes Christian oppression.

    I will say this: as a person of color, if he had NOT been a Christian (real or not), he would not have been elected into office.

    I will also say this: if people believe he is Muslim, then the day may soon come with people of other faiths (or no faith) can win the highest office.

    Posted by: DireFates | Sep 28, 2010 10:00:09 PM


  18. Andy you're so naive. The President is obviously secular and is sympathetic of muslims just like you are. This is politics. Oh and this is supposed to be a gay blog too.

    Posted by: Gast | Sep 28, 2010 10:08:41 PM


  19. Cynical. REE-fucking-diculous.

    Posted by: Tom | Sep 28, 2010 10:54:20 PM


  20. It is sad to see atheists here parroting homophobes.

    "About 99 percent of humans need to keep their mouth shut. "

    But since atheism is simply yet another prejudice, not surprising. Homophobes only hate 10% of humanity, but atheists hate 99%.

    Atheism is just another way of oppressing and marginalizing everyone who has experienced something you don't.

    Posted by: David | Sep 29, 2010 12:40:24 AM


  21. "Ironically a recent poll showed that atheists and agnostics know more about religion than the believers of each fairytale"

    Ironically, that poll was superficial. I scored 100% on the online version, by the way, and from what can be deduced of the missing questions, would have had a perfect score on the full test.

    Athiests, as a rule, only know about the most visible elements of any faith, and on the more nuanced issues - like transubstantiation, their scores were below average.

    Posted by: David | Sep 29, 2010 12:44:16 AM


  22. Well, considering that atheism has no prescriptive or normative input whatsoever and is a description of reality, that would imply that you don't know what atheism is, david. Now how many times do you read about atheist's going up to christianists and telling them that they worship the devil?

    You're just another ignorant religious tool, in fact. It's the bullshit factor, though...it's rampant...everyone's a fuckin' expert, and nobody knows a goddamn thing. Count yourself average.

    Posted by: TANK | Sep 29, 2010 12:45:29 AM


  23. "Athiests, as a rule, only know about the most visible elements of any faith, and on the more nuanced issues - like transubstantiation, their scores were below average."

    LOL! Learn how to spell it, at least. As a rule? You know nothing, but given your religious beliefs, I'm confident that your ignorance of basic concepts is not troubling to you.

    Posted by: TANK | Sep 29, 2010 12:49:49 AM


  24. "What is wrong with discussing religion?"

    Because we have a little thing called "Separation of Church and State". The President is not suppose to be preaching religion. It should never come into the equation.

    The country would be much better off run by Atheists.

    Posted by: Al | Sep 29, 2010 2:47:43 AM


  25. "Atheism is just another way of oppressing and marginalizing everyone who has experienced something you don't."

    No. Atheism is based on scientific fact. Believing in some make believe sky fairy, is a sign of mental illness. Seek treatment.

    Posted by: Al | Sep 29, 2010 2:48:45 AM


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